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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 327-333

Health-related quality of life and the perceived palliative care needs among oral cancer patients

1 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Amrita School of Dentistry, Amrita University, Cochin, India
2 Department of Pain and Palliative, Government General Hospital, Ernakulam, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Chandrashekar Janakiram
Department of Public Health Dentistry, Amrita School of Dentistry, Amrita University, Edapally, Cochin, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jiaphd.jiaphd_35_17

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Introduction: Survival rate is the only outcome measure for cancer management which fails to recognize the impact of on health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Optimizing QoL before a timely, dignified, and peaceful death is the primary aim of good palliative care. Aim: The aim of this study is to assess the HRQoL of oral cancer patients and explore whether there is a need for professional palliative services to focus on social, psychological, and spiritual well-being. Materials and Methods: A mixed methodological approach was adopted. A validated closed-ended questionnaire was used to assess the HRQoL, and in-depth interviews were conducted to assess the palliative care needs. The study encompassed of 876 participants, among which 317 consented for administration of questionnaire and 12 participants consented for interview. Karl Pearson's coefficient test was used to find the association between the well-being score and demographic factors. Results: The general well-being of these patients was compromised. Elderly participants experienced bad (31%) general well-being. Semi-skilled (7%) and unskilled workers (5%) experienced bad general well-being while unemployed (13%) and retired (13%) experienced good general well-being in majority. Conclusions: HRQoLs are low in oral cancer patients, and early referral for palliative care might increase the QoL.

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